Pedestrian-friendly cities dot the landscape of the United States, but few are found in Florida. Unfortunately, most years, Florida is at or near the top of the list for pedestrian accidents. In fact, in 2017, Florida ranked second overall for both pedestrian deaths and number of accidents involving pedestrians. Experts believe that impaired driving could play a significant role in the occurrence of these types of accidents, as well as the rising use of cell phones.
Factors in Pedestrian Accidents
In the wake of a crash, you may find that one or more of these driving conditions played a role:
- Distracted driving
- Poor weather or traffic conditions
- Driving under the influence
- Failure to yield right of way to pedestrians
Pedestrians can also play a role in an accident, and these slip-ups can increase the likelihood or severity of an accident:
- Not waiting for a “walk” signal at an intersection
- Disrupting the flow of traffic by weaving between cars
- Jaywalking and not using marked intersections
- Unexpectedly darting in front of a car
Property owners may also be liable in a pedestrian accident. If there are poor lighting conditions, inconsistent signage, or other conditions that would otherwise make it dangerous for pedestrians, property owners may be partially at fault for crashes. The party responsible for maintaining the roads and sidewalks may also be found liable.
Damages of Pedestrian Accidents
Pedestrian accidents vary widely in severity, so it’s important to choose an experienced personal injury attorney who can properly assess your damages and figure out how much compensation to ask for. Medical expenses make up a significant portion of many claims, but for many victims, the damages of an accident do not stop there. You may also suffer lost wages and loss of future income if an accident requires you to take time off work, or worse, limits your ability to work. Attorneys may also ask for compensation for pain and suffering or loss of normal life, particularly if an accident leaves you in chronic pain or restricts your ability to partake in daily activities.
Recovering from an Accident
After an accident, you should seek medical attention immediately. Many injuries aren’t instantly visible, and a thorough medical exam is necessary to assess the effects of an accident. Furthermore, waiting to pursue medical care could make it more difficult to collect compensation for your expenses. Follow your doctor’s advice at all times. Trying to work or return to normal activities too quickly could slow the healing process and give insurance companies a reason to deny your claims.